Environmental News Archive

An almost weekly update of environmental news, particularly marine updates, with occasional splatters of transportation, indigenous, ideas of sustainability and sustainable development from around the world.


New ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions needed

By Dominique Loh, Channel NewsAsia
14 May 2007 1657 hrs

SINGAPORE: With environmental issues hitting the media spotlight lately, the oil company Shell says there are ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by using alternate fuels and having better carbon emission management.

The International Energy Agency estimates that over the next 25 years, the world's energy demand will grow by more than 50 percent and double by 2050.

Research into stretching current diesel technology is gaining ground, especially in the conversion of gas resources into gas-to-liquid fuel (GTL fuel).

Shell says particulate emissions of such GTL fuel is about 40 percent less and carbon dioxide emissions, about 60 percent less.

Eric Holthusen, Asia Pacific Fuels Technology, Shell Global Solutions, says: "The advantages are obvious because if you want to use gas in vehicles, you need special vehicles and separate infrastructure. If you can turn gas into a liquid fuel, you can use your present infrastructure – retail stations, tankers and cars."

By the end of this decade, Shell will ramp up its production facilities in Qatar which can pump out nearly 150,000 barrels of GTL fuel a day.

Another alternative is bio fuels, derived from crops like corn.

But experts believe to supply the world demand may be a huge challenge.

For one, such crops are sensitive to market prices and it will take huge supplies just to obtain a small quantity of fuel.

While the search for that "magic fuel" that emits zero carbon emission continues, experts say the world's dependency on fossil fuel remains for the foreseeable future.

The challenge now is to find ways to reduce carbon emissions.

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